Oh my dear Valentine!

via http://newstodaynet.com/ published on February 14, 2009

When Pramod Muthalik’s Rama Sene thrashed a few ‘loose’ and ‘forward’ women in a Mangalore Pub with the connivance of a section of ‘secular’ media, which made him famous worldwide overnight, no one would have thought that Muthalik would give up violence and take to Gandhigiri. Even he himself would not have expected that the overnight fame would bring such a drastic change in his attitude and approach.

 

Muthalik has decided to take on the Valentines in a Gandhian way and announced that he and his sene would help the Valentines get married with police protection and parental acceptance. He was so magnanimous that he declared his intention of supplying ‘Mangalsutras’ free of cost. Even Karunanidhi’s DMK government, which has an unbeatable track record of showering freebies on the people, has not thought on these lines. Probably, it would include it in the coming budget session.

 

Coming back to the Valentines Day celebrations, this year it is going to be unique and special, as so much (unwitting) publicity has been given by Muthalik & Co, and it might become a precedent for other countries to follow suit. Even the Christian countries, which exported this Valentine culture, would not have thought of such promotional campaigns! And then there is Renuka Chowdhury, the irrepressible woman that she is, rose to the occasion and challenged Muthalik and his senamen. While sending a stern warning to them, she motivated the ‘loose’ and ‘forward’ women by declaring that she would lead from the front a ‘Pub Bharo’ campaign. Don’t forget, the very same minister had earlier advised the womenfolk of India to always carry a condom in their bags and drive their husbands away if they are not acceptable to condoms.

 

The middle class and lower middle class parents, who have for the first time realised the danger their girl children are getting exposed to, through the Mangalore incident, would see the minister’s announcement as an insult on injury. The minister, who hasn’t done anything credible in her long political career, has emboldened the girls through her ‘Pub Bharo’ call resulting in a ‘Facebook’ group called ‘The Consortium of Pubgoing, Loose and Forward Women’ instructing their thousands of members to send ‘Pink Chaddi’ (pink coloured underwear) as a Valentime gift to Muthalik and his men. Unperturbed by the announcement, Muthalik for his part, has decided to buy saris and dhotis, in addition to Mangalsutra, for the Valentines’ marriages. So, this year, apart from greeting cards, roses and other gifts, underwears, saris, dhotis and Mangalsutras will also be having a record sale. This is a great success for ‘consumerism’ in a beleaguered economy.

 

‘Love’ is not alien to India’s ethos. In fact it has a sort of divinity attached to it. Ancient literatures have umpteen real life stories on love and romance. But what is promoted by the western ideals and this type of Valentine culture is just booze, sex and smut. Sex is intrinsic part of love, but it cannot be the sole part of it. Another sad fact with this so-called youth festival is that many youngsters, who fail in their love adventure, commit suicides. They invariably choose this Valentine’s Day to end their lives and the rate of suicides increases every year as per police records. In fact, the police stay very alert on this particular day. One side they have to protect the ‘successful’ lovers and on the other side they have to safeguard the ‘failed’ lovers.

 
Supporters of this induced farcical culture, including the government of India, justify it on the grounds of individual freedom and personal privilege, showing scant regards to its negative social impact. Even freedom has its own limits and there is also a line between personal privilege and social indecency. Also there is nothing ‘saintly’ about this Valentine’s Day. This is plain cultural invasion, which needs to be defeated at any cost. 

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